Rotary Club of West Chester members awarded $30,000 to representatives of 10 nonprofits. The funds came from a generous, anonymous donor. Community Philanthropic Committee members chose from 22 nonprofit applications.
Kathleen Sanger, Home of the Sparrow development director, states: “No one nonprofit can do their job alone. We work together to provide safety nets for individuals and families who need support. You have no idea how important and how far your donations go.”
Glenda Brion, Community Warehouse executive director, explains they provide furniture and household goods weekly for 10 to 12 families coming out of shelters. She says their grant will deliver items that "make clients' houses into homes.”
“Believe and Achieve partners with the West Chester Area School District to provide positive experiences for students during summers,” says Kara Todd. “We provide morning classes, afternoon field trips, and farm fresh markets which provide produce and fruit for families.”
Doug Pacitti, representing Chester County Children, says their volunteer staff secures funds enabling underprivileged children to attend summer camp; 65 attended in 2022.
“Providing rent assistance and other help for single, working parents remains the mission of North Star of Chester County," explains Don Neimetz, executive director.
“There are lots of community shelters, but our mission is keeping families together,” shares David James, a board member at Friends Association for the Care and Protection of Children, a nonprofit that just celebrated its 200th anniversary.
The Westside Community Center, a new awardee this year, will use its grant "to empower the community’s next leaders,” says Ryan Enns, explaining they provide after-school/post-high school programs to prepare students for life. New this year is immigration legal services, he says.
Heather Robino, representing another new awardee, Parish Hall Kitchen, says their program feeds the hungry and serves a hot meal every Friday night for 45 to 50 people. This program started at Holy Trinity Church. “In 2017, we started a culinary program," she adds. ”Then when COVID came along, we started a Parish-To-Go program, serving over 300 households on a regular basis.”
Support for the 24-hour Crisis Line is a priority of the Domestic Violence Center of Chester County. "Some funds will be used to provide services to the 15 traumatized children in the shelter,” comments Sandra Romeo.
The Barn at Springbrook Farm helps children through animal-assisted activities. ”Seventy percent of the 350 children served are autistic. Children learn socialization, and get help with verbalization on a one-on-one basis by volunteers,” explains Nan Latona. “We're 100 percent reliant on volunteers, but with the upkeep of the animals and barn, the importance of donations cannot be stressed enough. Only 8 percent of funding comes from fees."